Was Dzulkifli given two specific tasks on his appointment as MACC Chief - don’t allow any investigation affecting Najib’s political survival and free mandate to abuse the MACC to hound the Opposition?

Datuk Dzulkifli Ahmad thanked the heavens for having completed his first year as Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission Chief Commissioner.

He said yesterday: “Alhandulillah, I survived.”

In his first year as MACC Chief Commissioner, the MACC had admittedly been very active when compared to previous chiefs whether of MACC or its predecessor, the Anti-Corruption Agency, in pursuing actions against corruption and the corrupt except in the biggest case of kleptocracy not only in Malaysia but in the world – the international multi-billion dollar 1MDB money-laundering scandal, which had even transformed Malaysia overnight into a global kleptocracy!

In fact, when on January 26, 2016 the Attorney-General Tan Sri Mohamad Apandi Ali cleared the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak of any wrongdoing on the RM2.6 billion found in the latter’s personal bank accounts, Dzulkifli was seated next to the chief prosecutor during the press conference, in his capacity as director of the Attorney-General’s National Revenue Recovery Enforcement Team.

It is clear that Dzulkifli had played a major role in the Attorney-General’s decision that Najib had not committed any wrongdoing on the RM2.6 billion “donation” in the Prime Minister’s personal bank accounts.

Dzulkifli should explain whether his appointment as Chief Commissioner of MACC came with two specific tasks – firstly, not to allow any investigation affecting Najib’s political survival, in particular the 1MDB scandal, and secondly, a free mandate to abuse the MACC to hound the Opposition?

Is this the reason why the MACC is strangely silent and inactive in the largest kleptocratic scandal in the nation’s history – the 1MDB scandal?

Dzulkifli’s tenure as MACC Chief Commissioner will largely hinge on his action or inaction on the 1MDB scandal. This is clear in the following Malaysiakini report of his interview on the occasion of his first anniversary as MACC Chief Commissioner:

“When asked that the opposition continues to question MACC's credibility as it had failed to clamp down hard on the 1MDB scandal, Dzulkifli declined to answer.

"’Next question,’ he said in the press conference.

“To a question, if this was a tough question, he also refused to respond. He said: ‘Next question.’”

Whether Dzukifli blazes the path to lead the 2,000-strong MACC to combat corruption, malpractices, fraud and dishonesty in the civil service and the private sector and establish itself as a world-class anti-corruption agency like its counterparts in Hong Kong, Singapore and Indonesia will depend on its handling of the 1MDB scandal and other cases affecting the Prime Minister.

Will the MACC re-open corruption investigations into the 1MDB scandal when it should be clear as day in the 18 months since the Attorney-General’s exoneration of Najib of any wrongdoing in the 1MDB scandal that the Apandi’s decision is not tenable or sustainable at all!

Dzulkifli’s first anniversary as MACC Chief Commissioner has coincided with two ominous developments: firstly, the missing of the deadline by 1MDB for the first payment of RM2.58 billion to International Petroleum Investment Co (IPIC) over their London arbitrarion settlement agreement; and secondly, the AFP report quoting a French judicial source as saying that Najib’s confidante, Abdul Razak Baginda was charged in France on July 19 with “active and passive complicity in corruption” and “misappropriation of corporate assets” in connection with RM5 billion purchase by the Malaysian Government of two Scorpene-class submarines and one Agosta-class submarine from the French naval dockyards unit DCN, which is linked to French defence group Thales.

Dzulkifli must speak to answer whether MACC would re-open investigations into both the 1MDB scandal as well as the Scorpene submarine purchase scandal, with Najib as the Defence at the relevant time of the Scorpene deal.

Lim Kit Siang DAP Parliamentary Leader & MP for Gelang Patah